Motorsports Weekend Guide: March 20 to March 22

Welcome to another 24-carrot edition of Hooniverse’s weekly guide to who is racing what and where this weekend. This weekend finds the oldest-running American sports car race holding its 63rd annual edition while California hosts a broad swath of racing on the country’s other side. There’s plenty of amateur racing of note and, if you live south of the Equator, you can enjoy your weird-looking stock cars, too.


IMSA Tudor United SportsCar Championship: 12 Hours of Sebring

The TUSC series runs its second race of the year in what could perhaps be described as the 36 hours of Florida after the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona in January. The Daytona race produced plenty of excitement and drama, which one can usually expect from the grueling half-day race at Sebring International Raceway. Many teams and drivers will tell you that Sebring’s slab-concrete surface—from its legacy as a World War II air force bomber training facility—is among the roughest in the world and puts everyone through more of a wringer than 24 hours at Le Mans or Daytona.
Last year’s race represented a low moment for the fledgling series with some abysmal driving, poor officiating, and nearly half the race held under full-course caution conditions. However, the 47-car field is considerably smaller this year, which could very well translate to a better race.
Website: IMSA site. Sebring site. Event page. Schedule. Entry list. Standings.
Supporting series: Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge. Cooper Tires Prototype Lites. Porsche GT3 Challenge USA. Mazda MX-5 Cup.
Live coverage: Saturday @ 10:30 a.m. ET on Fox Sports 1, @ 12:30 p.m. ET on Fox Sports 2, @7:00 p.m., and 10:00 p.m. ET on Fox Sports 2.

World SuperBikes Championship: Buriram United International Circuit (Chang, Thailand)

After a cracking pair of opening-round races at Phillip Island in Australia, World SuperBikes stays in the Asia-Pacific region for its first-ever race at the new Buriram United International Circuit. The Thai track only opened last fall and this will be the first major international race there. The track is currently working on getting FIA Grade 1 status, which would allow it to host Formula 1 races eventually.
As for the racing, Australia saw utter domination by British riders, who picked up all six podiums in the two races. Veteran rider Leon Haslam picked up his first win since 2010 aboard his new Aprilia and also finished second while countryman Jonathan Rea managed the same outcome on his Kawasaki. Chaz Davies scored a pair of third places on his Ducati so while the Brits dominated, three different bikes occupied the podium. If the machinery has that kind of parity all year, this could really be a banner year for World SuperBikes.
Website: WSBK site. Chang site. Event page with schedule. Entry list. Standings.
Supporting series: World SuperSport Championship.
Live coverage: Sunday @ 7:30 a.m. on beIN Sports.

NASCAR: Auto Club 400 ( Auto Club Speedway | Fontana, CA)

The 2014 Sprint Cup champion Kevin Harvick looks to have something to prove this year, having finished in the Top 5 at every race so far, including a pair of wins. His victory at Phoenix last weekend was his fourth consecutive win there so look for the Stewart-Haas driver to have another field day on Auto Club Speedway’s two-mile D-Oval. Another winner this year, Jimmie Johnson, may as well call Auto Club his second home; Johnson has five wins and 14 Top 10 finishes there in 20 races.
Here’s an interesting tidbit: Chip Ganassi’s drivers haven’t won a NASCAR race since June 2013, when Jamie MacMurray won at Sonoma. However, Ganassi driver Kyle Larson finished second at Auto Club last year, ironically sandwiched between recent newsmakers Kyle and Kurt Busch on the podium. Kyle Busch, by the way, is still recovering from his injuries at Daytona while his  brother Kurt was recently reinstated after his suspension and will return to action this weekend.
Website: Sprint Cup site. Auto Club site. Event page. Schedule. Entry list. Standings.
Supporting series: 300 (Xfinity Series)
Live coverage: Sunday @ 3:30 p.m. ET on FOX (TV) and Motor Racing Network (Radio/Streaming audio). Xfinity Series – Saturday @ 4:00 p.m. ET on Fox Sports 1 and MRN.

Stock Car Brazil: Autodromo International de Goiania — Ayrton Senna

If you’ve never seen it, Stock Car Brazil is fantastically entertaining. With tubeframe silhouette versions of the Peugeot 408 and Chevy Sonic sporting grunting V8s. The cars look a bit like DTM or Super GT racers if you squint and the all-road-course races feature intensity not unlike Australian V8 Supercars. The most unfortunate part of the series is that it doesn’t get any international coverage.
Website: Stock Car Brazil siteEvent page. Entry list.
Live coverage: None in the U.S.

Turismo Carretera: Concordia

Like Stock Car Brasil, Argentina’s national “touring car” series are all tubeframe, but unlike any other series, the cars are esoteric silhouette versions of “classic” Argentine imports and essentially the same cars that have raced for 40 or so years: Ford Falcon, Chevy Coupe SS, Dodge Polara GTX, and IKA-Renault Torino (not actually an “import,” per se). Cars all sport inline-six engines and if a racing IKA-Renault Torino doesn’t pique your interest, the fact that both that car and the Polara run “Chrysler Cherokee” (aka AMC-based) engines might trip your trigger. Despite its relative obscurity, Turismo Carretera is huge in Argentina with full grids of 30 or more cars. Interestingly, the series has run continuously under the same sanctioning body since before World War II, making it the oldest racing series under one sanctioning body.
Website: TC site. Event pageEntry list.
Live coverage: None in the U.S.

Lucas Oil Off-Road Racing Series: Lake Elsinore

Short-track off-road racing begins this season in the West with the Lucas Oil series visiting Lake Elsinore for the first of three weekends.
Website: LOORRS Site. Lake Elsinore site. Event page. Schedule. Entry list.
Live coverage: Live timing on LOORRS site. TV replays as outlined on series website.

SCCA Majors: Road Atlanta

The SCCA Majors Tour does well at America’s bigger tracks and this weekend is no exception. The Road Atlanta round will bring huge Spec Miata (35), Spec Racer Ford (36), and GT1/GT2 (28) fields. Also, LeMons racer Mike Taylor will race his freshly built Honda Civic this weekend at his home track after scoring a podium in his first Majors weekend two weeks ago.
Website: Majors site. Road Atlanta siteEvent page. Schedule. Entry list.
Live coverage: Live timing on SCCA site and on Race Monitor for smartphones and apps.

SCCA Majors: Chuckwalla Valley Raceway

Across the continent, the Majors race in the California desert looks to be a bit more sparsely attended with 75 total entrants. Nevertheless, winners can still qualify for this year’s SCCA Runoffs at Daytona International Raceway in the fall.
Website: Majors site. Chuckwalla siteEvent page. Schedule. Entry list.
Live coverage: Live timing on SCCA site and on Race Monitor for smartphones and apps.

24 Hours of LeMons: Sonoma Raceway

This is LeMons’ annual takeover of Sonoma Raceway in hoighty-toighty California wine country. With 180 cars, this race typically becomes a brutal war of attrition and patience followed by repairs, repairs, and more repairs.
Website: LeMons site. Sonoma site. Event page with schedule. Entry list. Hooniverse Preview.
Live coverage: Live in-car streaming on Racer Connect. Live timing on Specialty Timing website and on Race Monitor for smartphones and apps.

World Racing League: MSR Houston

After a cracking start to the 2015 season at NCM Motorsports Park, the WRL heads south to MSR Houston for its first race there. This is a one-day, 12-hour race.
Website: WRL  site. MSR siteEvent page with schedule.
Live coverage: Live timing on Race Monitor for smartphones and apps.
[Lead photo copyright 2015 Hooniverse/Eric Rood | Other photos:, World SuperBikes, NASCAR]

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